Cole to miss remainder of season
And CasonBlog is looking in its toolbox for a replacement.
This is a big loss for the Carolina Hurricanes, as Erik Cole has emerged as a bonafide NHL star this season. Cole's currently 11th in NHL goal scoring with 30 goals in 60 games and was on pace to basically double his career bests.
Every 'Canes game I've seen this year, he's been the most exciting player on the ice.
Cole's injury came as the result of a Brooks Orpik hit from behind and Orpik was tossed from the game. It's quite likely he'll also receive somewhere in the neighbourhood of a five-to-ten game suspension from NHL disciplinarian Colin Campbell (whose son, Greg, is playing for the Florida Panthers this season).
Orpik doesn't have much of a history of being suspended, but he does have a reputation as a big, and sometimes cheap, hitter. On the Cole play, Orpik obviously wasn't trying to hurt him, but Cole was definitely vulnerable with the way he curled towards the boards.
Still, Cole's a star on one of the best teams in the league. Orpik's a grunt, playing for the worst team in the league. The league knows there won't be much griping if they throw the book at him — and a lot if they don't.
If this same hit is Markus Naslund on Bryan Muir, there's little chance Campbell is involved.
I'll let you deduce what happens here.